Camp preview: Safety in numbers?

Camp preview: Safety in numbers?
July 24, 2012, 4:27 pm
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The Redskins start training camp on Thursday. Were going around the team to let you know what were looking for when practice gets underway. Yesterday we looked at the offense (line, backsreceivers). We started the defense today with the line and linebackers and now well look at the defensive backs.Anticipated starters:CB Josh Wilson
CB DeAngelo Hall
SS Brandon Meriweather
FS Tanard JacksonHall and Wilson return as starters on a secondary that ranked among the teams most disappointing units last season. After those two, well, theres not a whole lot of certainty for position coach Raheem Morris, whos in his first season in Washington. Morris will rely on newcomers Meriweather, a two-time Pro Bowl selection, and Jackson, a playmaker, to replace Oshiomogho Atogwe, who was cut, and oft-injured LaRon Landry, who was placed on the Jets physically unable to perform list Monday.Key reserves: S DeJon Gomes
S Madieu Williams
CB Cedric GriffinIf either Meriweather or Jackson falter, Gomes and Williams could challenge for significant playing time. Griffin, meantime, is a hard hitter who should see plenty of playing time and add some much needed depth and snarl to the position.On the bubble:CB Kevin Barnes
CB Chase Minnifield
CB Richard Crawford
CB Morgan Trent
CB Brandyn Thompson
S Reed Doughty
S Jordan Bernstine
DB Travon BellamyBarnes struggled in slot-corner coverage last season, while Doughty, who has been counted out often during his Redskins tenure, once again finds himself fighting for a job. Thompson showed some promise last year but he will have to fight off Crawford, Trent, and possibly Minnifield if he is going to stick around this season.Three things to watch:Who survives?When practice begins Thursday, there will be 15 defensive backs on the roster. When the regular season begins in New Orleans on Sept. 9, there will be nine. There is no obvious camp fodder here; every player except Bellamy either was drafted by the Redskins or has NFL playing experience. In other words, it figures to among the more intriguing position battles.Whats Minnifields status?Signed out of UVA in May, Minnifield was expected to start the season as a reserve. But hell reportedly start training camp on the PUP list as he continues to recover from microfracture knee surgery in January. He has a very good chance of contributing to the team at some point, but will it be this year or in 2013?Can D-Hall rebound?In 2010, Hall made six interceptions and 95 tackles and earned a spot in the Pro Bowl for the third time in his career. In 2011, however, he might have cost the Redskins two wins against the Cowboys. He let Dez Bryant slip away from him on third and 21 situation in their September meeting, then he slipped in man-to-man coverage on Bryant in overtime two months later. Which DeAngelo will show up this season?